When naming our children, many of us go through a lengthy process to decide the one most perfect.
Some, name their children after favorite relatives, others after a favorite place. We see the very pregnant clutching the latest baby names book trying to come up with exactly the right one. Some parents worry about what the initials will read, like BAD. I have even known parents to add up the name and see what number it creates, and then check if the number is lucky.
They really need to drink more wine.
Today Brian asked how I got my name, Catherine. Many times we have discussed how he got his name, but I suppose we have never talked much about how I got mine. He only knows me as “Mom”.
If someone were to ask him his mother’s name, he would steadfastly reply, “Mom” (First and last name).
However, for our mother, the ever devout and practically-a-nun Catholic, I am named for Saint Catherine of Siena. Saint Catherine was the 25th child of a wool dyer in northern Italy. Yes, I did type 25. (I think I’d find a way to glue it shut – saints forgive me). She started having mystical experiences when she was 6 – seeing guardian angels. At the young age of 16 she became a Dominican tertiary, and it was said that she would have visions of Christ, Mary, and the saints. Her letters “Saint Catherine’s letters” and a treatise called “a dialogue” are considered among the most brilliant writings in the history of the Catholic Church.
She was a writer – go figure.
Saint Catherine is the patron Saint of of Fire Prevention, firefighters, bodily ills, illness, miscarriages, sick people, sickness, nurses, and nursing services, sexual temptation (thanks mom) and Italy.
How’s that for a namesake? No pressure.
Picture the “deer in headlights” look on Brian’s face when he said, “Huh?” as I explain where my name comes from. I think he better understands how he got his name and prefers my method to my mother’s.
Brian is named after Brian Boru, the first King of Ireland, But what really cemented the name for me is when Monty Python’s Life Of Brian came on the television while I was in hard labor. I love Monty Python. The doctor became upset with me for paying more attention to the movie, than to my final pushes.
Hey folks, it was my sign.
Thus the life of Brian came into this world.
Little does he know that in the background when he was taking his first breath the following was coming out of the television:
“Brian: I’m not the Messiah!
Arthur: I say you are, lord, and I should know… I’ve followed a few.
Followers: Hail Messiah!
Brian: I’m not the Messiah! Will you please listen? I am not the Messiah, do you understand? Honestly!
Girl: Only the true Messiah denies His divinity!
Brian: What?! Well, what sort of chance does that give me? All right. I AM THE MESSIAH!
Followers: HE IS! HE IS THE MESSIAH!
Brian: NOW, FUCK OFF!!!!
Arthur: How shall we fuck off, oh Lord?
Brian: Oh, just go away! Leave me alone.
I think this is what our teenage years just might sound like.
Until next time-
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